Cafe blinds are an almost classic feature of the modern cafe, a built in character piece. This dates back to the original French bistros, when attracting customers was achieved mainly by being visible. “Cafe style” as it’s now known is a descendant of these design motifs. The outdoor blinds in particular are very much a part of the cafe’s image.
Cafe blinds- design issues
Café blinds can present some unique issues for design. This is a business where everything has to look upmarket, and has to match the design motifs of the café. Style, presence and character are also major issues, because blinds occupy a large amount of highly visible space.
Functionality is the other issue, and it can be a problem in its own right. Lighting can be variable depending on location, and it may take a while to figure out what’s needed, and where. Some areas may get too much light, others may get none, because of facing, and light has to be allowed in to compensate.
Outdoor blinds and awnings
Outdoor blinds and awnings are a feature of classic French café design. They’re actually commercial images for customers, and these external features are often used as attention getters. outdoor awnings and sunscreen blinds are often used as elegant design features. They’re a type of fashion statement, and they can look fantastic, particularly in a really well designed café environment.
These blinds and awnings need to be more than decorative, however. They’re working blinds and awnings, and they need to be able to take sunlight, weather and the local environment. A common choice for the external fittings is heavy duty material, weatherproof, and very tough.
Color fading is another issue. The best quality outdoor blinds have excellent pigmentation, are properly sealed, and won’t “evaporate” in the summer sun. The added advantage of these very durable fittings is that they’re also much easier to clean, sparing café owners the eyesore effect of faded, drab-looking external shop fronts.
Special blinds for special places
It’s quite common for café owners to have special requirements for their blinds, outdoor blinds and awnings. Certain areas, particularly areas like balconies and sidewalk tables, may require particular combinations of features, like sunscreens, sunroofs, or other things requiring customization and special fitting.
Some cafés have large areas to deal with, and sometimes complex floor settings which mean managing light is a real issue. Fortunately, this is less of a design problem than it seems. The best suppliers can provide a full service consultation, and plenty of options in these areas. It’s a good idea to ask for some help when dealing with these issues, because it’s possible to commit to a major purchase and find that the layout doesn’t work. A phone call to a professional installer can solve these issues before they happen.
Modern cafés have some of the most beautiful interior designs, with the interior natural lighting as one of their best features, thanks to good blinds and top quality design.